The International Triathlon Union has announced Sarasota, Florida, as a host city as part of 2017 ITU World Cup schedule.
U.S. elite triathlete Eric Lagerstrom (left) exits the water at an ITU Continental Cup event held at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota, Florida. (Wagner Araujo)
The Sarasota ITU World Cup will take place Oct. 7-8, 2017, at Sarasota's Nathan Benderson Park. Elite triathletes will compete on a spectator-friendly, multi-loop 1,500-meter swim, 40-kilometer bike, 10-kilometer run course through the park, the site of ITU Continental Cup events since 2013. Age-group races will also be contested as part of the overall weekend of events.
"Welcoming elite triathletes around the globe to compete in an ITU World Cup event turbocharges the growth of our sport here at home," said Rob Urbach, USA Triathlon CEO. "Sarasota is an ideal market to showcase the sport, and spectators will see some of the best international competition the sport has to offer in an incredibly spectator-friendly Olympic-distance swim, bike and run course. Plus, amateur age-group athletes will compete on the same exact course, which makes triathlon so unique."
The United States has hosted a total of 20 ITU World Cup events since 1991, with the most recent being the 2009 Hy-Vee ITU Triathlon Elite Cup in Des Moines, Iowa. Though the Sarasota ITU World Cup will be the first world cup held on U.S. soil since 2009, the nation has hosted a number of international events as part of the ITU schedule, including five ITU World Triathlon Series races: Washington, D.C. in 2009, San Diego in 2012-13 and Chicago in 2014-15, which served as the host city for the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final and Age Group World Championships.
Sarasota is one of five ITU World Cup events contested in four countries in the Americas. Other events in the region include Merida, Mexico, also a first-time World Cup host; Cozumel, Mexico, the host of this year's ITU World Triathlon Series Grand Final; Salinas, Ecuador; and Buenos Aires, Argentina, which will serve as the final ITU World Cup event of the season. There are 17 total ITU World Cup events on the schedule for the season.
"The ITU World Cup races create an important bridge to elite success for athletes," said Marisol Casado, ITU President and IOC Member. "We've seen how useful the World Cups are both for the development of athletes, as well as the sport, which is why we are thrilled to bring more World Cups to next year's schedule.”
2017 ITU Triathlon World Cup Schedule
Feb. 11-12: Cape Town, South Africa
March 11-12: Mooloolaba, Australia
April 1-2: New Plymouth, New Zealand
May 6-7: Chengdu, China
May 27-28: Madrid, Spain
June 3-4: Cagliari, Italy
July 22-23: Tiszaujvaros, Hungary
Aug. 12-13: Merida, Mexico
Sept. 2-3: Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic
Sept. 23-24: Huelva, Spain
Sept. 30-October 1: Weihai China
Sept. 30-October 1: Cozumel, Mexico
Oct. 7-8: Sarasota, Florida, USA
Oct. 28-29: Salinas, Ecuador
Oct. 28-29: Tongyeong, Korea
Nov. 4-5: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Nov. 4-5: Miyazaki, Japan
About USA Triathlon: USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon, as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 races and connects with nearly 500,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work with athletes, coaches and race directors on the grassroots level, USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).